Alex Blaze

Herman Cain: Real Men Eat Sausage

Filed By Alex Blaze | November 16, 2011 3:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Politics
Tags: feminism, gender, GOP presidential candidates, Herman Cain, pizza, sausage

I don't know if it's officially a gaffe or if no one cares, but here's Herman Cain with GQ:

Chris Heath: What can you tell about a man by the type of pizza that he likes?

Herman Cain: [repeats the question aloud, then pauses for a long moment] The more toppings a man has on his pizza, I believe the more manly he is.

Chris Heath: Why is that?

Herman Cain: Because the more manly man is not afraid of abundance. [laughs]

Devin Gordon: Is that purely a meat question?

Herman Cain: A manly man don't want it piled high with vegetables! He would call that a sissy pizza.

There's nothing more manly than longing for a mouthful of nice, hard sausage.

This reminds me of Pansy-gate from back in 2008. NC Governor Mike Easley said Hillary Clinton would make Rocky Balboa look like a pansy (he meant it as a compliment to Clinton) and a queer listserve I was on erupted in a debate of whether he meant pansy as a gay slur or pansy as "feminine and weak." Because making fun of someone for being feminine, and equating femininity with weakness, is totally fine? And there's no relationship between homophobia and sexism?

Of course, no further proof is needed that Cain is unqualified to be the president of the US, and the fact that anyone's taking him seriously says more about our political culture than it does about Cain himself. So this post isn't meant to take a jab at him.

Instead, I'm more interested in how someone, even someone with public speaking experience who's just joking around, can use language that attacks and makes him sound more like a bully than a jovial pizza expert. There were dozens of ways to go with the question other than gender essentialist BS, but after a long pause that's where his mind went. This stuff is just a reflex for some people


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I felt really dumbfounded that he would say vegetables are for sissies and follow that up with " I love my pizza piled with meat and mushrooms."

Are mushrooms in the vegetable closet or something? Does anyone need to out them as sissiful to Cain?

Mushrooms aren't vegetables. A mushroom is the fleshy, spore-bearing fruiting body of a fungus.

Consensus is different. I know we can get pedantic but for all intents and purposes mushrooms are always grouped in the vegetable group when describing nutritional needs.

Fungi, is separate from plants, animals, and bacteria. One major difference is that fungal cells have cell walls that contain chitin, unlike the cell walls of plants, which contain cellulose. These and other differences show that the fungi form a single group of related organisms, named the Eumycota (true fungi or Eumycetes), that share a common ancestor (a monophyletic group). This fungal group is distinct from the structurally similar myxomycetes (slime molds) and oomycetes (water molds). Genetic studies have shown that fungi are more closely related to animals than to plants.

That is a scientific meaning. The trouble with LANGUAGE is that we don't treat vegetables as PLANTS in a culinary sense. We tend to attribute general perception of qualities to determine culinary terms.

If you ask any cook, or most people, mushrooms are deemed vegetables. Sort of like the break between gay and lesbian. To some people, lesbians belong in the same group. To other people, they've set parameters in which they don't.

Ahahahahaha. I didn't even notice that Lucrece. That only makes it funnier.

This is the first time you've attached that image to a post where it was literally true.

You knew I'd use it. :) Btw - I love, love, love the new photo of you!

Yes to the photo!!!!

The pis is awesome! Alex is just too cute. However, I keep thinking he has become the military dictator of some obscure country--looks like he has epalauts or however they are spelt, lol.

lol. A friend of my sister sent me the photo on facebook. It's from when I visited her and met all her friends in Seoul and got LASEK at the same time. The title of the photo is "No more glasses."

I also put it in because I promised Bil a new photo if he got the site redesigned. I assumed I'd have until 2019, but....

Oh, yeah, no glasses! Well, congrats on that, and on your trip! Sounds like something awesome. :)

But pizza is in and of itself now a vegetable, right?

Hmmm.... I don't know if we have any proof that Herman Cain knows mushrooms aren't plants.

Kostelecke Uzeniny, yum!

@ Lucrece. I just went back and reread everything in this post. Was it edited? The first reference I see to mushrooms is the one you made and not something Cain allegedly said. Gosh I'm confused.

But lets do a restart on Alex's question. Alex said "There were dozens of ways to go with the question other than gender essentialist BS, but after a long pause that's where his mind went."

Alex you don't seriously think the nominating circus is anything other than entertainment of the masses do you? It is all about as real as professional wrestling.

Post wasn't edited. He's referring to the second page of the published interview on GQ's site.

All this talk of mushrooms and sausages... I guess my penis jokes at the top sucked all the air out of the room.

Your post accomplished at least something. I just read the wikipedia Herman Cain page. Lots of interesting things there about his career and life.

Cain does have an interesting background,especially being a conservative black politician from Atlanta, which is a rarity. A little insight might help understand how he operates. Cain started life in "The Bluffs", a part of Atlanta that is the ghetto of two ghettos, Vine City and English Avenue. The Bluffs is BAD--lots of liquor houses, drug dealers on every corner. It was where a female police officer on a chase ran over a small child and where a very elderly lady was killed by the Red Dog narco squad when they went to the wrong house. (They were disbanded as a result.) Two elderly lesbians had a shot/gambling house in The Bluffs and their security guard was a feminine gay man who lived across the street. (This was in the early 1990s.) Then his Daddy got up enough money and moved to Collier Heights a working/middle class, African-American urban suburb well away from the centers of the Civil Rights Movement around the Atlanta University Center. Collier Heights has always been conservative. He went to Archer High, not Booker T. Washington. Archer was a middle class school until Perry Homes public housing project began to be served by it and Harper High was built for the Collier Heights kids. Eventually they combined as Perry Homes was shut down for a while. (Very dangerous project and massive. The mail carriers had a police escort on "check day".) Ok, BTW groomed the future civil rights leaders based on its location and historicity. MLK's kids went to school there and lived in Vine City. Archer was far removed. So Cain did not get that positive social justice influence and probably lived at home when he went to Morehouse. And that is apparently how you make a black conservative politician in Atlanta. This comes from living in Atlanta for 30 years and consultation with a native who probably knows every civil rights leader and his or her sexual orientation in Atlanta (hot and perhaps shocking grease) because he started hanging with the leaders of the King Center as a small child. I picked his brain about Herman Cain and he was not part of the civil rights movement in Atlanta as far as he can remember. However, I noticed in the biography his father worked for Robert Woodruff, the founder of CocaCola who was rather conservative but a great philanthropist, especially for the arts and he was probably a strong influence.

By the way, if you think Newt Gingrich is also from Atlanta, he really is not. He is from Cobb County, one of the most conservative voting districts in America and also the home of former congressman Bob Barr. Cobb is northeast of Atlanta and is wealthy. It has a rather substantial gay community, however, especially around Marietta and Austell.